Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Big problems with ISI data reported by science editors

Got this in an email from one of my lists:


This presumably will be drawing some attention shortly. It is a very disturbing report by editors from the Journal of Cell Biology and the Journal of Experimental Medicine who have joined with the Executive Director of the Rockefeller University Press in reporting their inability to verify published impact factors using data provided provided by ISI itself. Their fruitless efforts to replicate published impact factors for their own and other journals revealed numerous and serious errors in several data sets provided by ISI and call into question the validity of both ISI's dataset and their published impact factors. If the problems they encountered are widespread, then the host of evaluative decisions that rely at least in part on published impact factors are suspect. Published impact factors affect authors' decisions about manuscript submission, funding awards, and promotion and tenure. While critiques of the use of impact factors are quite common, this is the first serious question raised about the underlying validity of the data used to calculate impact factors and therefore the accurracy of the metrics that are published.

The editorial by Mike Rossner, Heather Van Epps, and Emma Hill was published in the Journal of Cell Biology and is available at

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Looking over Cornell's newest VIVO interface (take a look:, I noticed a headline under the news section:

"After long road to Cornell Ph.D., Kelvin Grant gives back with library scholarship"

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

MSL Meeting - 12/11/2007

1. Announcements
-The MSL holiday party is this Friday at 6pm
-Pat has bought popcorn for the custodial staff. See her to contribute $$

2. MSL Services
-The electronic version of Science shows up very far down in the hit list in the catalog because it is titled "Science Magazine" not "Science". Paula sent a request to have this changed. Tara will follow up to make sure there is resolution to this problem.
-Chrissy is going to the communications committee meeting this afternoon. Email her any items you would like her to bring up.
-Tara reported that the 2nd floor will be getting the old carpet back; the 5th floor will be recarpeted sometime during Spring semester with new carpet.
-Carrie asked if there would be a new reference desk schedule for Spring. Are we single staffing? We took a vote and over half the staff wanted to change their current base schedule so we will need to redo the schedule for Spring.
-Laurie asked everyone to weed out documents from their serve folder because systems is switching to new servers.
-Everyone should bring in their stuffed animals for the annual holiday display case.
-Beth reported there are 40 titles that need decisions (withdraw/keep) to determine if they should be barcoded. She will be sending the information around to selectors.
-Val is going on three IFAS center trips this Spring. She will be helping two center libraries revamp their libraries. One is undergoing a reclass project and the other is looking to change how they use the library space.
-Carrie asked if we wanted extra Princeton files from the Education library. She will ask Alex to bring one over so Christine can evaluate.
-Sara announced the Annunciator is working again. The staff voted to change the layout to full screen with a crawl.

3. Library Newsletter
-Joe B. is on the newsletter committee. Submit any ideas for Science stories to him. Two ideas submitted in the meeting were "Laptops @ MSL" and a "New Librarian" story.

4. Committee reports
-Val reported on the Web 2.0 group. They broke into several groups to explore various technologies and have now submitted a report.
-Facebook group: Will create a UF Libraries account
-Internal blogs: Tom M. is creating a template; the rest of the group is creating policies
-E-learning: This group hasn't gotten very far with it's charge to "Integrate library resources into WebCT & Moodle".
-Library games: The Bioactive game has finished testing and team members will begin incorporating results from the beta testing into the game; The guitar hero day was a sucess and the library will continue to explore similar events.
-Project management: Denise's committee will test Basecamp as a project management tool.
-Toolbar group: They created a library toolbar. No one was aware of how it will be incorporated into the library.
-Vivo: The student assistant is fantastic and has already inputted the 28 test departments. Next she will begin inputting publications.

5. Computer services
-Laptop 101: Everyone played with the laptops; we reviewed the patron policies; if you see patron having problems using the laptops send them to Chrissy, Laurie & Michael. Chrissy is creating a troubleshooting guide for staff.

6. Cataloging
-Steve F. is retiring and his party is this afternoon.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Our Professional Image

A former colleague of mine wrote this editorial for Library Philosophy and Practice on librarianship and our obsession with our own image. Thought it was worth sharing:

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Library in Second Life

As announced in staff meeting, Laura Jordan and I are starting reference hours at our library in Second Life. Laura will be there on Weds, 3-4 and my hour is on Fridays from 1-2.

The library coordinates are 98, 24, 24. See Laurie if you'd like the SL software installed on your computer. Once you've created a free account and gone through the new member orientation, teleport to the above coordinates and you'll be in front of our library.

I've put this information on the wiki in case anyone has any questions at the reference desk. Feel free to refer patrons to me if they have additional questions.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

MSL Meeting - 10/23/07


New carpet is being chosen for the 5th floor. Clean, gray carpet squares will replace the destroyed carpet squares on the 2nd floor.

A new security system is being installed that requires the Gator 1 Card for entry into the library and secure rooms.

The library will be closed Christmas Eve.

The report completed by the Fines Taskforce is being reviewed and several suggestions are being implemented.

The libraries are conducting the LIBQUAL+ survey this year. Vernon will send around the questions they are using.

We are evaluating the new Ovid Platform before switching CAB Abstracts to the Web of Knowledge Platform. Next week the new Ovid Platform will be available for evaluation.

Computer Services

When you begin your shift at the reference desk make sure to check that the caps lock is off at the print release stations.

If you need a list of software in the circa labs you can check their website.


The Table of Contents links do not look like online resources anymore.

The music publication number is now displayed and searchable.

The LKR field is now partially implemented in Endeca.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Cross-Division news from 10/12 meeting

Old web pages:
When people ask if DLC or Archives keeps old UF web pages, the answer is NO. But you may refer them to the Wayback Machine to look up a website ( or web page to see older versions.

Theses and Dissertations:
Refer to Staff Web / Preservation/ Binding for details on processing of ETD's, which takes about 7-11 weeks. Preservation staff are contacting some 10-12,000 authors of UF print dissertations (not masters'), requesting permission to digitize. Authors must sign form to consent. If authors wish to alter the restrictions on viewing their theses, they must write a letter to the Unviersity Archivist (Carl Van Ness). Sorry, no phones or emails -- we need a signature. Theses restricted for 6 months are invisible to all, but suppressed catalog records (for 6-monthers or any theses not found in public catalog) may be viewed in Aleph Staff Side.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Peer Instruction Idea

I remember hearing recently that Net Generation kids tend to believe each other, learn well from each other and are accustomed to learning and working on teams or in groups. Maybe I am simplifying that somewhat, but it gave me an idea for Instruction.

Why not have an undergraduate Library Instruction Peer Program that is taught by well-trained, work-study student employees? Classroom L308 could have a number of dedicated hours per week, perhaps a couple of specific hours each day, in which it is staffed by two student employees providing Library Instruction ‘tutoring’ for BSC and ENC students, as well as other undergrads who need help with their research skills. Other library reference staff could be on call or available on Chat Ref to backup the student employees. IT staff, like me and Michael are available to keep an eye on the classroom, as well. Michael is even here in the evenings and could potentially provide evening technical support for the classroom.

It’s just an idea, but it might work if patrons knew they could go to the classroom at certain hours and get the help they need – from their peers. Our student employees would likewise gain some valuable experience, and the librarians or other staff managing the program would have another accomplishment to enjoy.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

RefWorks/Endnote comparison

Hi All,

I thought some of you might find this comparison interesting. It is specific to University of Notre Dame but has some great info!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Millennial College Students

Jeanna Mastrodicasa, co-author of Connecting to the Net Generation: What Higher Education Professionals Need to Know about Today's Students speaks at the Distance Learning Council on why millennial students are different from previous generations and how this understanding can help faculty in teaching.

From UF's Academic Technology Newsletter

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

"Find it @ UF" and the Catalog

Hi All,

Recently Denise noted that patrons are finding the "Find it @ UF" buttons in the Endeca catalog confusing. She notes:

"I've talked with several patrons in the last week who are confused by the presence of the Findit links in endeca. In particular, they've been in indexes, seen Findit and clicked. From the SFX window, if they click on the link to the catalog, they are then very confused to see the Findit button again. But they click it because it's very attractive, and get themselves stuck in a loop."

The RNC began discussing the issue and is currently considering removing this button. Does anyone else have thoughts, observations, or comments on this matter? Most likely there will be a broader conversation about the benefits/drawbacks of including the button later, however, right now we're trying to gather general thoughts.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Meeting minutes - 8/28/2007

MSL Services

  • Discussion about the new course reserves system. Many students are reluctant to create an account to view textbooks and just want to know quickly what books are available. Faculty must create an account & class so books we have on reserve are associated with the class. This hasn't happened for all the books in the textbook project so for now you need to look in the course reserves system & the catalog to see if something is on reserve.

  • Security. The new security guards should not be going to library-wide functions. Also, UPD will begin helping on game day Saturday's after the first two games. Their main concern will be making sure people aren't borrowing electricity from the library. If you see someone plug in an extension cord, don't unplug it.. Call UPD instead.

  • Sci-Tech Librarian. Interview will be held September 7th. Details are in the Personnel folder

  • Fire procedures. In light of the fire last week it was decided to have a common meeting point for staff in the event of another emergency. The spot decided upon is the picnic table next to the pond.

  • Endeca problems. Many people have noticed problems in the new Endeca catalog. If you see cataloging problems report them to If you see circulation-type problems report them to Chrissy and she will forward to FCLA.

  • Coordinating instruction. Saved for next meeting because of time

Databases. Vernon ran into a problem trying to access the databases through Metalib. Instead of being directed to the UF Portal he was directed to the FCLA Portal! Denise pointed out you can use the Quick Links list to find any database we own (they're all there). Or, the link to Research Gateway on top of the homepage search box leads to the UF Portal.

Computer Services. Currently trying to figure out the best way to distribute SciFinder 2007 to students & faculty. A new computer has been put in L215 to aid with gift book decisions.

Cataloging update: None.

Monday, August 27, 2007

IE and FirstSearch databases

Patrons using IE may encounter access issues when trying to connect to any FirstSearch databases using Metalib. I receive an error message that looks like:

The webpage cannot be found

HTTP 404

Most likely causes:

  • There might be a typing error in the address.
  • If you clicked on a link, it may be out of date.

What you can try:

Retype the address.

Actual solution: using a browser other than IE will allow you to access the databases.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Land-grant in the news

I'm not sure if any of you have seen in the news how Texas A&M (TX land-grant) has lost the privilege to work on Select Agents.

The IFAS Dean of Research, Dr. McLellan, has posted a letter on the IFAS website that talks about safety in the research lab:

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Our blog disappeared

Unfortunately our blog accidentally disappeared. Fortunately, the domain was not grabbed before we realized the problem and reclaimed it.